Lesson 2 Assignment

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    Maria Grice

    Here is my submission for lesson 2 assignment.

    Maria Grice
    Lesson 2 Assignment
    1st February 2014

    Elena Shumilova

    As I was pondering whether to start my photography course, I was browsing the
    Internet for some inspiration that would hopefully give me the motivation I need to take the leap. It was during this time that I came across the artist and photographer, Elena Shumilova.

    There are two things that immediately grabbed my attention when I saw her body of
    work and read about her:

    1. Her subject matter and style
    2. How new she is to photography – having only started in 2012 when she got
    her first camera

    In one of her interviews, what she said struck a chord; “I do not want to miss out on her growing children”. Photography is starting to become a passion of mine and I know that it takes time and dedication to hone one’s eye (especially for someone like me who is not artistically inclined and not very creative). However, like Elena, I do not want to miss out seeing my 2-year old daughter grow. She is my primary passion and my favourite subject (together with our pet dog). Elena seems to have been able to combine her two passions (her children and her art) beautifully.

    I love that her subject matter is predominantly her children and her animals. From as far back as I can remember I have always loved looking at photos of animals and children, especially the candid ones. I am not one for art-directed photography as it usually comes out forced and unnatural (not everyone is a born model, after all). The softness and naturalness of her photos are striking. Her photos are emotive and one can really feel the depth of emotions that were present when the photos were taken.

    Elena Shumilova’s photos also have a lot of texture; from the thickness of her dog’s tail, the softness of the rabbits fur, the crunchiness of snow and the softness of her children’s skin. It is almost possible to be able to touch and feel these different textures. Her photos seem to have an element to it that transports you to another place. For me, this is what photography is all about. It is hard to take ones eyes off her images.

    Furthermore, her photos seem to have all the areas of photography that really
    interest and inspire me – the innocence of youth, the beauty of animals and the
    amazing landscape.

    Although I realize that Elena is already a gifted artist (having studied at Moscow Institute of Architecture), it is motivating to know that she has only really started taking photos in 2012. This fact inspired me to finally take that leap and study photography. It has also encouraged me to keep taking photos, even when all I seem to do is take “bad photos” for I know that photography is never-ending; constantly evolving and that there will always be room for improvement.

    Below are some of my favourite photos of Elena Shumilova:

    Maria Grice
    Lesson 2 Assignment
    1st February 2014

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    Duncan Rawlinson

    Thanks for submitting your assignment. You have done an outstanding job with your submission. Often students are lazy and they just copy what others have written or just submit something short and not very well thought out.

    I appreciate that you are finding inspiration form Elena Shumilova

    More of here images are available for viewing here:


    Here are the settings she used in camera (excluding her photoshop/edits in post processing) to create these images:

    EXIF DATA for image of boy with Rabbit
    Date Time Original: 2013:06:02 19:17:27
    Exposure Time: 1/320
    F Number: f / 2.80
    Exposure Program: Manual
    ISO Speed Ratings: 125
    Metering Mode: Pattern
    Flash: Flash did not fire, compulsory flash mode
    Focal Length: 135mm
    White Balance: Auto white balance
    Make: Canon
    Model: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
    LensInfo: 135/1 135/1 0/0 0/0
    Lens: EF135mm f/2L USM

    EXIF DATA for image with boy dog and sled
    Date Time Original: 2012:11:29 17:39:18
    Exposure Time: 1/40
    F Number: f / 1.20
    Exposure Program: Normal program
    ISO Speed Ratings: 500
    Metering Mode: Pattern
    Flash: Flash did not fire, compulsory flash mode
    Focal Length: 50mm
    White Balance: Auto white balance
    Make: Canon
    Model: Canon EOS 5D Mark II
    LensInfo: 50/1 50/1 0/0 0/0
    Lens: EF50mm f/1.2L USM

    Don’t worry if all of that doesn’t make sense just yet.

    Just know that she is no different than you, she just learned how to control her camera and take advantage of her environment and light.

    One thing you can immediately take away from her work is notice the time of day she shoots her photographs. Invariably it’s the more interesting times of day either magic hour or when there is some “bad weather”.

    Her images certainly capture a certain emotion and feeling. One thing she is very smart about is her use of childrean. Children are so natural and emotive in their own right if you just pay attention their innocence and joy can be captured on camera. It just helps to be in the right place, at the right time, with the right light…

    She uses a nice combination of shallow depth of field and very sharp lenses.

    You can certainly learn a great deal from her.You could probably even reach out and contact her to learn more.

    Keep in mind her images are heavily post processed/photoshopped.

    Thank you for taking the time to submit a really good assignment.

    I have edited your post so that your text shows up above and not just as a pdf.


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